we went apple picking
on the bottom of a glass bottle.
planets took turns
blowing on the rim. a bird
died & turned into a fresh tree.
encyclopedias collapsed into each other
until we only had five words left
& they were all the names of apples.
boys are all made of branches. girls are all
made of soot. i was somewhere inbetween.
a root burned in me. a twisting.
when we kissed i got smoke in your mouth.
holding hands is like becoming
a chainlink fence. tell me about
your favorite parameter. mine is
the edge where the orchard becomes
a regular forest. there is a glass between
fruit & wild wooden areas. i loved you more
when we were a few feet apart--
when we were stepping
in mucky apple carcasses at the tree's feet.
i dreamed of all the little amber seeds
with their knees tucked into their chests.
i wanted only mcintosh & you wanted
the goldens. a slipping in our ankles.
picking & picking. filling basket after basket.
i said do you think that's enough
but it only came out mcintosh?
you nodded, thinking i meant yes more.
piles of apples. we could never eat
so many fruit. you were tired of me
i knew. i was sorry for all the flesh
& the burning. a little column of smoke lifted
from the lip of the bottle. we held hands
picking picking. a stem is
a neck. a trunk is a neck.
we picked every single apple.
not one remained. you fed me one
& i fed you. juice down me chin.
you said gala & winesap. i said cameo.
fingers through my hair. all the branches
in you bearing fruit. i pinked them off
your arms. all love is meant
to clatter. a dusk poured
from the skin of
a particularly large apple.
you feel asleep
& the bottle slinked away.
i carry a pouch of seeds
& left you there.